Tuesday, 2 July 2013

We've moved!

Our blog has been relocated to:

Please continue to follow us!  You can also access us through the Investing in  Children website: www.investinginchildren.on.ca
"Go to our projects" and discover more about our program and access our blog!

Monday, 27 May 2013

Making it Happen!

JP Robarts delivery.jpgCommunity can be a powerful support for a school.  Especially when it comes to feeding children.  When the stove at JP Robarts was on the fritz they were eager to find a way to keep healthy meals for their children coming!  A lot of effort went into looking for possibilities to solve the problem.

When a Community Developer with the Child and Youth Network Family Centre in their neighbourhood - Argyle heard about the situation she spread the word in the community and with the help of Impact Junk Solutions they were able to get a working stove for the program.

Whenever there is a problem that you alone can not solve don't hesitate to ask others for help!  We are working together to feed our children so they can have healthy bodies and active minds!

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Frozen Berry Shapes

An Easy, Fun Snack for Warm Days!

Looking for snack ideas that kids can help with and that will be cool and healthy on warm days?

Try making frozen berry shapes!

They are easy to make!  Just follow these steps:

1. Get some ice cube trays that are in shapes - you can find them in grocery stores, drug stores, kitchen stores, and even some dollar stores.
2.  Choose any kind of berries
3.  Cut the berries into pieces that can fit into all the crevices of the shapes in your tray
4.  Fill a squeeze bottle with water and have the kids fill the remaining spaces in your tray with water.
5.  Put them in the freezer!

Once they are frozen you can add them to yogurt, put them in glasses of water, or eat them as they are!

berry flavored water
Recipe adapted from www.superhealthykids.com

Monday, 13 May 2013

Colour-packed salads for healthy active minds!

Taken from www.cbc.ca

Salads can be boring and intimidating for children, but we know that eating a variety of fruits and vegetables is important!  How can we make salad interesting for children?
  • Try packing it with colour!  The more choices children have within a salad, the more likely they are to try it.  Making it brights and colourful can make it more tempting to try, especially for little ones.  Try tying it to a lesson about colours for children who are still trying to learn and remember all the different colours.  For older kids use the chart posted in a previous post about eating through the rainbow and have them try to remember what each coloured fruit or vegetable has in it for our bodies.
Taken from www.cottoecrudo.com
  • Try putting both fruit and vegetables in salad together! You can minimize the lettuce and add other things to liven it up, add more flavour and make it more interesting.  Somethings that can go great in salads are:
      • Beets
      • Cherries
      • Oranges
      • Strawberries
      • Peppers of all colours
      • blueberries
      • Apples
      • Grapes
      • Advocados
      • raisins/craisins
      • Corn
      • Beans
      • Chick peas 
      • Edamame
      • Peas
  • Try adding low-fat yogurt to the salad instead of traditional dressing.  It is a healthy option and sometimes sweetening it up can appeal to kids.
  • Salad can be fun, don't be afraid to try new things!  Getting kids to participate in making salad can make them more likely to try it!

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Breakfast creates active and engaged minds!

After not eating all night while sleeping, a child’s brain needs a fresh supply of glucose, or blood sugar. For growing minds, choose foods that are rich in whole grains, fibre and protein. Eating breakfast cereals and food with low or no added sugar can improve kids’ attention span, concentration and memory, making it easier for them to focus and follow along with classroom activities.

Eating breakfast is important in keeping children's minds healthy and active for the school day.  A child is better able to absorb more information after they have started the day with a healthy breakfast.

Eating breakfast can also help balance a child's metabolism and maintain healthy weight.  Children who do not eat breakfast are often more likely to want sugary snacks throughout the day which can create unnecessary weight gain.

Food can drastically affect a child's mood and behaviour.  Children who do not eat breakfast are more likely to be sleepy, unreceptive, and uncooperative than those who have eaten a healthy sack or meal before coming to class.

A healthy breakfast is important for every child.  A well-fed mind is an active and engaged mind!

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Food of the Month

The weather is warming up!  Why not enjoy some juicy oranges in your snacks?

There are many health benefits that come with including oranges in your diet and their sweet and good to eat! These are just a few of the benefits:

Taken from health.slides.kaboose.com
  •  As you may already know oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C—just one orange supplies 116.2% of the daily value for vitamin C!  Vitamin C is a great support for a healthy immune system and prevents free radical damage in the body which prevents artery blockage and reduces inflammatory diseases in the body such as asthma or lung disease.

  • According to research by Italian researchers in the Division of Human Nutrition at the University of Milan, Italy (Guarnieri S, Riso P, et al., British Journal of Nutrition), eating an orange or drinking a glass of orange juice is better than taking a vitamin C supplement alone.  The vitamin works best with the other nutrients in the orange for optimal immune system support.
  • Oranges are high in Phytonutrients which combined with the high vitamin C content in oranges are great antioxidants!  Drinking orange juice does not guarantee these nutrients as they are found in the white part surrounding the juicy orange.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Fruity Healthy Ice Cream!

Now that the warm weather is approaching...or so we hope...here is a great idea to think about.  Ice cream made almost entirely out of fruit.  It is so easy! Just follow the steps and you will have tasty ice cream that is very healthy and it is kid tested and approved!

  1. Pick a frozen fruit - whatever you want, you can even pick a combination of fruits
  2. Pop it in the blender with a bit of juice, milk or water (your choice)
  3. Blend until an ice cream texture!
It is a great way to give a healthy treat without the added sugar!  Try and enjoy!

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Are you eating your way through the rainbow??

We know that talking about the colours of fruits and vegetables is a great way to integrate learning and food especially for younger children!  But do we realize just how important "eating through the rainbow" can be for our health?

Did you know the colour of the fruits and vegetables we eat can be a powerful indicator of the benefit we are getting from them?

Making sure your fruits and vegetables are ripe will help make digestion easy!  Try to see how many colours you can cover when you prepare snack!
For more detailed information about different coloured fruits and vegetables you can also check out this article: http://bit.ly/ZkPAqX

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Food of the Month

This month we are going BANANAS for healthy food!


Bananas are such an incredible food with amazing benefits!  It is the "strong man" of fruit and promotes health in so many ways!

So what are some of the incredible benefits?

1. Bananas help our bones grow stronger!
  • Bananas contain probiotics that nourish the friendly bacteria in our bodies. In a nutshell this probiotic bacteria helps us absorb more calcium!
2. Bananas give us energy!
  • We all know bananas are a rich source of sucrose, fructose and glucose, all of which work together with high fibre in the banana to releases the sugars slowly into our bloodstream.  This gives us enduring energy!
  • Bananas also contain high levels of potassium that helps our muscles work properly during exercise and prevents the build-up of lactic acid which means less muscle cramping.  
3. Bananas give us brain power!
  • The glucose in bananas helps boost brain power. 
  • Bananas also contain potassium, which research has shown can help in learning and memory by increasing alertness. 
  • Children who consume a potassium-rich fruit breakfast often do better on tests than children who do not.
4.  Bananas help regulate our digestive system!
  • Bananas are high in fibre which keeps things moving through your digestive tract.
  • They also contain resistant starches which improve regularity of bowel movements. 
 5. Bananas help with depression!
  • Bananas are full of things that help combat depression including dopamine and epinephrine.   
  • They also contain tryptophan which helps metabolize the neurotransmitter called serotonin, known as the "happy" molecule.  
  • These things act to improve your mood and fight depression. 

Bananas are a tasty and easy food to snack on!

  • Bananas come as a self-packaged, ever-ready snack.  They should be eaten when they are ripe (yellow) for the best digestion.

     Some things you can try with bananas: